Use your English skills and enjoy cultural exchange in Pitalito, Colombia




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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    Welcome to Colombia

    Our project was founded by Victor in 2009 and has slowly grown until the quarantine hit us all. Though at the time of writing this we have yet to recover from the quarantine we have big plans. Ethan, who met Victor while traveling South America joined the management in 2020. Ethan is a gringo from Chicago but has been living abroad for the majority of his adult life. With the addition of Ethan, we are expanding our volunteer program as well as our professional ambitions. We welcome long term volunteers that would like to help with English but also potentially other parts of the business. Shorter term volunteers (2 weeks) are also welcome but they will concentrate on English exchange.

    Pitalito is a small city in the middle of mountains with lots of coffee farms in the area. San Augustine and multiple locations for outdoor enjoyment can be found in the area. Pitalito is also big enough to support fun nightlife when it is allowed. As we emerge from the quarantine, we are situating the housing for volunteers. Victor has a small plot of land outside of Pitalito surrounded by beautiful coffee farms. We require that volunteers come in with an easy going mindset and we do require some type of travel insurance in for the volunteers as this is not only good to protect us but is highly recommended by our lawyer. This is the developing world and in some cases labor is cheaper than buying food for volunteers, so please keep this in mind when bringing western mindsets and work value into consideration. We will do our best to make sure you enjoy yourselves as you help us in the process.

    Some things that we can help arrange, especially for longer term volunteers are; Spanish classes with our teachers (price to be determined but probably around $9 per hour), cycling routes, dance classes, Jui-Jitsu, coffee farm tours and any tourist activity that you can read about.
    Feel free to write us with any questions.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Charity Work
    Art Projects
    Language practice
    Babysitting and creative play
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

    This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Spanish practice with trained teachers,
    discover our beautiful rivers, landscapes, mountains, waterfalls,
    go horse-ridding, (if you travel to Puerto Rico)
    visit coffee farms,
    learn to salsa (and other forms of colombian dance)

  • Help


    This may be unlike other Workaway opportunities you have experienced. We like to have our volunteers take an active part in planning their experience. We have a list of things we would like help with, most days the volunteer will be able to choose what they wish to help with. There are some days however that we need help with a specific activity and we would like the volunteers to remain flexible.

    The overall idea of the volunteer program is to bring the English language to students from backgrounds that likely can't afford to study abroad. We do our best to immerse our students in the English language in a natural setting. In many ways you will be working without knowing it, so enjoy your stay and have fun. We ask in general for 4 hours of work, though some days this will be completely on your terms and your schedule. These 4 hours may be difficult to calculate however. The volunteer house as the quarantine ends will be transformed into an island of English in small city Colombia. We will have some paying guests but it will also be populated by students and long term volunteers. The idea behind this is for students to have an opportunity for constant interaction in English. We want the volunteers to make themselves available for the 4 hours a day but be willing and friendly in interactions with the students in the immersion program. (this means speak English, if you want to be in Colombia to learn Spanish, we can offer classes but what we need is you pushing the students to learn English.)

    Beyond English, we want to excite the students about the possibilities of travel and the world beyond small city Colombia but we do need native English speakers, or extremely fluent speakers with a very light accent.

    The following is a short list of common activities we ask the volunteers to do;
    1. Be an active participant in the language immersion program.
    2. Work on the creation and editing of English documents for the school
    3. Make new English practice activities for the website.
    4. Help with teacher lesson plans and material creation.
    5. Small group informal English practice.
    6. Assist with Teachers English improvement.
    7. Promotion of the school. Be seen in public and show that we have native speakers
    8. Work in English immersion camps (this is part of the school expansion program and may not always be available).
    9. Local community outreach
    10. Help with school organization
    11. Help keep the volunteer house clean and stocked
    12. Give us your ideas and help us grow
    13. Assist with the student scholarship program
    14. Play an active role in the volunteers journey.

    ****Long term volunteers may be asked to play an active role in supporting other volunteers.

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    Spanish: Fluent

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    You can contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    Semi-Private room (sometimes there will be two people in the same bedroom)
    Basic food items available to volunteers, in most cases the volunteers prepare meals independently or as a group.
    Kitchen available to be used
    Bicycle (depending on availability)
    Gym, supermarkets and restaurants near by
    Public transport and sometimes personal transport by owners
    Clothes washing facilities available close by or in house (depending on availability)

    The apartment is located in Pitalito, though more rural accommodation may be available if preferred.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    You can fly from Bogota to Pitalito (1 30 hour) or take the bus from bogota to neiva and then to Pitalito (8 hours) . The weather here is nice and temperate. the company bus is COOTRANSHUILA or COOMOTOR.

    Pitalito has approximately 150,000 inhabitants. It is considered the largest producer of coffee in Colombia, thus the town has become a notable coffee-growing area within Colombia. On several occasions it has been awarded with the "Cup of Excellence" for producing the best coffee in the country.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    This is possible, but the digital nomad must be flexible in finding a location to sit and work. We often have an open classroom but depending on the time it may not always be available. We have the best internet connection available, however it is not always perfect. A digital nomad that commonly uses online meetings may find it frustrating however, doing online research would likely be fine.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This is an option but please confirm. Victor the founding owner has a small plot of land that has space. But this is down a long dirt road and would take some coordination because it is about 5 miles from the school.

  • Can possibly accept pets

    Can possibly accept pets

    Make sure to confirm, there is often a solution but only in the right situation. We are constantly upgrading and altering the living quarters. Ethan, one of the owners has a big dog that may find other dogs challenging.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

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Accuracy of profile: (4.9)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (4.6)

Host ref number: 651888721327